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Developer Plans Three Restaurants on C Street Plaza

One of the developers of 700 Penn is opening up three restaurants in 8,600 feet at the corner of Seventh and C Streets SE, the Washington Business Journal reported Friday.

Eastbanc is partnering with Hollis Silverman, formerly of ThinkFoodGroup to form Eastern Point Restaurants. The three different concepts opening 300 Seventh St. SE will be Eastern Point’s first project. The names and concepts have not yet been revealed, but the placard for the liquor license application lists 230 interior and 150 exterior seats, the later along the C Street Plaza and Seventh Street SE.

The three different restaurants are expected to work together to activate the plaza during business hours, Lanier told the Business Journal, in a spot that he says is otherwise quiet except for the sounds of children enjoying the water feature.

The inspiration came in part from another restaurant in which Lanier has a role. He is a partner in Kafe Leopold (3315 Cady’s Alley NW), which was similarly established to activate the Eastbanc development.

Detail from Exhibit 115A2 of the Consolidated PUD submitted to the DC Zoning Commission May 25, 2012, showing planned locations for exterior seating. Blue arrows indicate entrance/exits. Stanton-Eastbanc/DCOZ with assistance from Corey Holman.

The exact plaza configuration has not yet been determined. Lanier told Biz Journal writer Rebecca Cooper that he likes the “free-form plazas of Europe, where tables and chairs and umbrellas dot the storefronts and there isn’t much to separate the seating from the rest of the plaza. But some structure might be necessary to contend with the weather, he concedes.”

The hours requested in the license application are Sunday to Thursday from 7 a.m. to 12 a.m. and Fridays and Saturdays from 7 a.m. to 2 a.m. ANC 6B Alcohol Beverage Committee (ABC) Chair Chander Jayaraman (6B08) said that the ANC would try to reach a Settlement Agreement (SA) with the restaurant group.

Jayaraman noted that the ANC has tried to keep closing hours for patio seating limited to midnight for other recent applicants, such as Eastern Wine Bar, soon to open on the 300 block of Seventh Street SE, and EAT BRGZ, which has applied for patio seating for 45 across C Street SE from the Eastern Point restaurants, with additional outdoor seating on Seventh Street.

“I want to make sure that we are being fair and equitable across the board when it comes to operating hours for summer gardens and exterior seating, taking into account to needs of neighbors and not putting any one business at advantage or disadvantage over one another,” he said.

Jayaraman noted that because C Street SE is a privately owned street, the city cannot compel the owners to change the number of seats. The configuration and rough capacity of patio spaces was worked out during the Planned Unit Development (PUD) process, concluded more than five years ago prior to construction.

“I do wonder how it’s going to interact with the water feature that is there,” he said.

Children play in the fountain feature in the C Street SE Plaza, near the location of the planned exterior seating for the East Point restaurants.

The roll call hearing before the Alcoholic Beverage Regulation Administration (ABRA) is set for August 12. At that hearing, the date will be set for future discussion on the license as warranted.

Prior to the hearing before ABRA, Advisory Neighborhood Commission (ANC) 6B will be consider the license at the meeting of the ABC Committee 7 p.m. Wednesday, July 3. If consensus is not reached by the committee, it will also be heard by the full ANC at 7 p.m. Tuesday, July 9. Both meetings are held at the Hill Center (921 Pennsylvania Ave. SE).

ANCs do not meet in August.

Contact ABC Chair Chander Jayaraman via email at 6B08@anc.dc.gov. Learn more about ANC 6B by visiting ANC6B.org

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